Raspberry and Double Chocolate Muffins and Loaf Cake

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffin

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffin

You know it’s been a long time since you’ve made cake when work colleagues start asking for them! Around the same time last year (just after Christmas when everyone was trying to shift a few pounds!) it was the opposite, we were all sick of the sight of cakes and biscuits in the office…

So I dusted off the muffin tin and rummaged for the muffin cases to try out this Raspberry and Chocolate Muffin recipe. This recipe current has 239 positive reviews so I chose to go with this one without even bothering to look at others, why would I ignore such a highly recommended recipe?!

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffin

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffin

First thing to note is that the recipe uses ‘cups’ rather than weighing out each ingredient making it very simple to throw together. I usually have some frozen berries in the freezer for emergency baking or fruity sauce making (yes there are instances of such urgent issues in my life). I also have quite a few blocks of chocolate left over from Christmas baking. I’m not a huge fan of eating chocolate on its own so they have gone untouched in case of other dessert making adventures.

The recipe itself calls for white chocolate but I didn’t have enough so I ended up using both white and milk chocolates, hence the ‘double chocolate’ element of the muffin. As with most cake recipes, I reduced the amount of sugar from 1 cup to 2/3 cup. I figured that with all that chocolate in it, it would be sweet enough. On taste testing the muffins (I had to have 2 just to be sure) I would even go for half a cup of sugar depending on how sweet your chocolate is!

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffins and Loaf

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffins and Loaf

I was quite surprised that there is only 50g of butter and 1 egg in this recipe. Relatively low in fat compared to other muffin recipes, an excuse to eat double the amount maybe?

Due to the expanding number of people working in my office I made two batches. The first batch went into a loaf tin and the second batch in 12 muffin cases. I have to say that sticking the the muffins is much quicker. They took 20 minutes but the loaf tin took a good 45 minutes to bake. However, having a cake to cut up is always more enjoyable when with a group of friends with a round of tea and coffee… There are pros and cons to both, but pretty much any cake is always a good thing!

So you can imagine that after baking such lovely cake and muffins for my work mates, I was looking forward to seeing their reactions when they took the initial bite and tasted the tart raspberries with the sweet chocolatey nuggets of goodness. Well something terrible happened, and not for the first time! I FORGOT to take the cakes with me in the morning! Can you imagine the horror when I realised half way into my one hour commute to work? I just dreaded having to tell them all that the cakes I had made especially for them were abandoned on my coffee table 30 miles away… The worst of it was that I wasn’t even due in the office the next day so couldn’t even give them slightly stale cake. Oh well, more for me! ūüôā

Their wish has been left unfulfilled…

Previous baking adventures: cakes, tarts, cookies and muffins etc.

Cookie monster cupcakes

Cookie monster cupcakes

Compared to some experienced bloggers, I am still fairly new to the food blogging world. However my love of baking and taking photos of the results started long ago! I usually take pictures of my cakes and bakes with my camera phone then post pictures on Facebook (hence the poor quality of my photos!). I was looking through all these photos and found things I had long forgotten I’d baked!

I’ve decided to collate the ones I could find pictures of, some have turned out well and some not so well but it shows a range of what I like to bake.

I went through a phase of making cupcakes for a while, so they feature heavily and my attempts at macarons have been a little questionable. Some bakers like to use the same recipes over and over again, perfecting it to their tastes. I’m not one of these bakers! I like to go by cooking books and flick through the lovely pictures then I get my recipes on line where people have commented on how to improve recipes.

These bakes have been for a variety of events spanning around 5 years! Usually for birthdays, as gifts, for charity fundraisers or afternoon tea parties. Each picture brings back memories of the occasion it was baked for and I can even remember what they tasted like!

Maybe one day I will find the time to collate all these recipes into my own personal cook book so that I can go back to them when needed, as often I can’t find the recipes again!

Fig and frangipane tart

Fig and frangipane tarts: using up left over figs

Almond Slices

Almond Slices: dessert for family meal

Raspberry macarons

Raspberry macarons: These won me first prize in a charity’bake off’!

Ice cream cone cupcakes

Ice cream cone cupcakes: office party

Chocolate macarons with passionfruit cream

Chocolate macarons with passion fruit cream: made for a friend’s Christmas gift

Elderflower meringue santa hats

Elderflower meringue Santa hats: part of a ‘secret Santa’ gift for a colleague

Ghostly meringue cupcakes

Ghostly meringue cupcakes: Halloween themed office party

Black Forest Cupcakes

Black Forest Cupcakes: gift when visiting a friend

Baileys chocoloate cupcakes and scones

Baileys chocoloate cupcakes and scones: part of an afternoon tea party I hosted

Eton Mess

Eton Mess: these gorgeous espresso cups were a gift for my 30th Birthday

Cardamom and hazelnut cookies

Cardamom and hazelnut cookies: afternoon tea party

Macarons with chocolate ganache and mini cupcakes with fresh raspberry

Macarons with chocolate ganache and mini cupcakes with fresh raspberry: another afternoon tea party!

Ugandan coffee and ground nut cupcakes

Ugandan coffee and ground nut cupcakes: raising funds for a friend’s charity building schools in Uganda

Cookie monster cupcakes: My nephew’s 1st Birthday party
Mini cupcakes: Coconut, Hazlenut, Blueberry

Mini cupcakes: Coconut, Hazelnut, Blueberry: experimenting for as part of a Wedding afternoon tea buffet

Melting moments: shortbread with butter cream and jam filling

Melting moments: shortbread with butter cream and jam filling: trying out two toned piping on cookies for a staff meeting

Shortbread cookies filled with jam and butter cream

Shortbread cookies filled with jam and butter cream: treats for the family

Chocolate Roulade

Chocolate Roulade: Dessert for a family meal

Nutella cupcakes with raspberry

Nutella cupcakes with raspberry: treats for colleagues

Hazelnut cupcakes with nutella frosting

Hazelnut cupcakes with nutella frosting: treats for family

Carrot and Walnut cupcakes with cream cheese frosting and Lemon cupcake

Carrot and Walnut cupcakes with cream cheese frosting and Lemon cupcake: Charity bake sale

Spinach and Cheese muffins

Spinach and Cheese muffins: Friend’s afternoon tea party

American style buttermilk and mixed berries muffins

American style buttermilk and mixed berries muffins: experimenting with buttermilk

Chewy chocolate chip cookies

Chewy chocolate chip cookies: Trying to make ‘Millies style’ cookies

Emergency Saturday Breakfast: Feta, Sun-dried Tomato and Pesto Muffins

Feta, Sun-dried Tomato and Pesto Muffins

Breakfast should be the most important meal of the day. My weekday breakfasts usually consists of a banana with a cup of tea at my desk while reading my emails, so I really look forward to my Saturday late-morning breakfasts!

In the UK, 7.2 tonnes of food is wasted each year.¬†Love Food, Hate Waste¬†estimates that this costs ¬£12bn per year. Unimaginable in the developing world…¬†So in my efforts to waste less food, and save money, I try to shop a couple of times a week and buy enough food for a few meals. However as life gets pretty busy, tiredness takes over and that trip to the supermarket on the way home from work is just far too much effort!

On a regular basis this results in my partner telling me on a Saturday morning that there is nothing for breakfast then looking at me expectantly. The last thing we both want to do is leave the house to pick up food from the local convenience store, so a quick rummage through cupboard stores and the fridge, coupled with a little imagination usually results in breakfast of some description. Today this was Feta, Sun-dried Tomato and Pesto Muffins. As long as there is 1 egg, oil and flour then savoury muffins are easily made with any kind of filling. So this is when the fridge raiding comes in!

Finding a block of feta cheese, I took inspiration from this recipe for Sundried tomato, Feta and Herb Muffins and adapted the recipe for what ingredients I had. There was only a drop of milk left in the bottle, so I used natural yoghurt instead.  I used half a block of feta as there was no Cheddar. I also found a little sun-dried tomato pesto and put the rest of the jar in (about 3 tsp) so skipped the herbs.  I had to add some extra flour as the batter was quite runny. Luckily I could save the milk for my essential morning cup of tea.  20 minutes later, breakfast was ready!

The sun-dried tomato pesto gave the muffins a lovely colour and loads of extra flavour. I think the yoghurt added richness and helped to keep the muffins lovely and moist, so I will keep using yoghurt in place of milk from now on. I’ve made savoury muffins for many emergency Saturday breakfasts and these have been the tastiest by far!

Feta, Sun-dried tomato and Pesto Muffins

Feta, Sun-dried tomato and Pesto Muffins